Crochet Dude Decades Yarn

Blogged under Crafty Products by Tammy on Tuesday 29 January 2013 at 6:50 am



I am waiting on some freelance money, which means my play money is on the low side right now, but luckily, I had a few funds left so that I could indulge recently in some new yarn from a line designed by The Crochet Dude. He sent out a newsletter with a promo code that you could use to discount anything in his on-line shop. I ended up getting these two skeins from the 1960s Decades collection in the Blacklight colorway. They are made with 100% extra fine super wash merino, and each skein has 2 ounces/125 yards. I’m not exactly sure what I will make with these. I think there’s enough here for a hat and maybe some fingerless gloves or maybe a shawlette would be nice. I’m curious to see how this knits or crochets up. It is very soft, and the colors mingle from a dark, tonal pink to a pastel pink. Now I will be on the lookout for the perfect pattern for this yarn.

Mailing Out Some Amigurumi Love

Blogged under amigurumi by Tammy on Monday 28 January 2013 at 5:24 pm

My younger sister has two little boys who have autism. As you can imagine, every day is full of challenges for her family, but recently this has been multiplied because one of her boys is now dealing with some related health issues and was even hospitalized. He is home now and recovering, and medication seems to be helping somewhat, which everyone is very relieved about. However, this will be an on-going issue for them to deal with.



As a way to send some virtual hugs, I decided to send a few amigurumi toys, a teddy for the youngest who has been ill and a dog for my older nephew who has been a major trooper while his mom and dad have had to be hyper-focused on his brother.



Here is hoping they give them a little comfort.

Crafting Links to Visit

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Monday 28 January 2013 at 7:28 am

ACreativeDream
Shrinky Dinks… suddenly the most popular post on June’s blog… thanks to Pinterst.

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there is a crochet crown lace pattern, tutorials on how to transfer designs to skin and mold caramels using flexible ice cube trays and a pretty photo of an interesting style of lingerie.

How to Make Mixed Media Butterfly Tags to Add Sparkle to Any Gift
The right tools make these pretty gift tags look like they they took hours to make. Thank you Xyron, Cuttlebug, and Tim Holtz!

Image transfers revisited
Cyndi’s readers never seem to get tired of discussing image transfers in their work!

Message Board - Kinda
Cherie combines a bunch of things laying around to create board for some pictures. That was the plan anyway…

Pinterest Crafts: DIY Ideas
CraftFoxes lists the top 10 DIY projects on Pinterest. You might be surprised by some of the crafts on this list!

2ply on the Fly, as in 2ply Yarn

Blogged under spinning by Tammy on Thursday 24 January 2013 at 4:30 pm

These small skeins are my first attempt at plying two single strands of yarn together, and they turned out okay. In fact, these now look like yarn I could actually use to make something with for a change. I’m still not spinning as consistently as I would like, but I do not have huge chunks of roving that ends up looking like dreadlocks.

Here is a close up of one of the better of the two skeins.



Fuzz is still a factor, but I’m going to assume that fuzz, like consistency, will improve as I improve my skill level.

Finally! Some Colored Roving!

Blogged under spinning by Tammy on Wednesday 23 January 2013 at 5:34 pm

I told myself that I would not touch my Knit Picks roving order until after I used up all of the roving in my kit, but I finally caved the other day. I am so, so tired of gray roving! Not that I do not like gray. In fact, I actually bought some with my order, but after doing 2 ounces of gray, 2 ounces of white, and then about 1 ounce of the other gray roving, I just had to touch the colored stuff!




I decided to start with the Dill Heather colorway. Each is 5 ounces, so needless to say, that is way more than the small 2 ounce pieces I’ve been working with. I divided it a few times in to sections, and I have a fat and tangled cop (notice the use of the spinning lingo there) on my spindle. It became extra tangled because I dropped the spindle a few times. Yes, it is called a drop spindle, and I know why now.

I have tried plying already (more on that later), and it turned out okay. So I will probably ply this with another color from my new roving stash. I am still loving the spindle!

Here Little Piggy….Amigurumi

Blogged under amigurumi by Tammy on Monday 21 January 2013 at 6:03 am



I have been in a “color” mood lately, so I decided to whip up a bright pink amigurumi. I purchased this pattern, Amigurumi Cliveton the Tiny Pig, when Stacey (from FreshStitches) was having a pattern sale on her birthday. He is about 5 inches tall, so he was pretty fast to make. I’m actually on the lookout for a larger pig pattern. She has one, but it’s in one of her books, which I may have to just buy since it’s got some other cute pattern in it too.

Here is is a look at his squiggly little tail.




I’ve added him to the growing amigurumi donation collection. I may even make another one soon, but I’m now looking at making a dinosaur next.

Weekend Crafting Links

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Sunday 20 January 2013 at 10:04 am

ACreativeDream
June tackles the daunting white canvas…

DIY Onesie
Learn how to create a handmade onesie for a baby shower gift, with this simple tutorial from See Kate Sew.

Heart Crafts
The current craft challenge on the About.com Family Crafts site is all about making hearts. Drop by and submit your original craft to be published or submit a link to a heart craft you already have posted.

Mixed Media Artist
Have you ever joined a group but didn’t finish the challenge? Don’t worry…you can still sometimes end up with something you are proud of!

Teal Crocheted Afghan - Finished
Cherie finishes up the afghan she made by putting flowers around the edge.

Valentine Card Inspired by “I Heart Stationery”

Eileen was inspired with a minimalist sewn card idea by LA designer Victoria Vu, but went in a very different direction. Isn’t that what inspiration is all about?

Michael’s Craft Closet Giveaway

Blogged under CFEs/Contests by Tammy on Friday 18 January 2013 at 2:36 pm



Michael’s is having a big contest this month for a chance to win your dream craft closet. The deadline is January 28th, 2013, and 4 winners will receive a $1,000 Michael’s gift card, a personal shopping appointment at Michael’s, and professional advice from Jo Pearson about how to build the perfect craft closet. You can enter through the company’s Facebook page. Good Luck!

Small Skein Spinning Experiment

Blogged under spinning by Tammy on Tuesday 15 January 2013 at 4:01 pm



The last roving in my kit is 2 ounces of Jacob grey wool top. Before I let myself dive into my Knit Picks fiber (more on that later), I decided as a way to practice more and slow things down some that I would make smaller skeins and review them afterwards to see how I am doing. I split the roving into 4 strips. I thought I’d make a skein for each, but this first one broke on me, so I ended up with two.

I have learned that one ply yarn will be more spun than double or triple ply yarn, so that may have been some of the issues on my previous spinning attempts. However, I think these small skeins turned out pretty well as far as not being over-spun. I slowed myself down, spinning a little, drafting a little, spinning a little, drafting, etc. One issue I did have with this, and I’m not sure if it is the fiber or me, but it broke on me a lot. I had to really be careful not to draft too much or it would just break before I could even spin it.

Now my next problem I plan to deal with is the fuzz factor. The thickness is a little more consistent, and the twist looks much better, but this stuff is fuzz-o-mania. These close-up photos might show what I mean.




I’ve been told that the fuzz will not be that noticeable once I knit or crochet with it, but I would still like to tone down the fuzz. Still, things are looking promising.

Amigurumi Graduation - Franken-Raccoon

Blogged under amigurumi by Tammy on Monday 14 January 2013 at 3:47 pm



Yippy! I finished the last of four amigurumi for the Craftsy.com Woodland Animals Amigurumi class. I feel like I have graduated, at least with a B+. My work still is not up to the standards I want it to be, but I learned a lot in the class. For example, the last softie we made is a raccoon, and when you hear people say they don’t like to knit or crochet toys because they are fiddly, they are talking about this guy. He had lots of parts to him, a total of 13. He also required some color changing in the tummy and tail, but I learned some handy tricks for changing yarn colors.



I’m still struggling with the stitching together part of the process, as you can see by his Frankenstein-style neck. And every head I stitch on seems to be looking a little off the the side instead of straight ahead. I probably need to slow down when I stitch, but by this time, I so want him done. So far, this is the most difficult amigurumi I’ve ever made, so Franken-Raccoon will be hanging with me for awhile rather than heading to the toy donation box for now.

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